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Attorney for Wills

Attorney for Wills

If you die without a will, it means you have died “intestate.” When this happens, the intestacy laws of the state where you reside will determine how your property is distributed upon your death. This includes any bank accounts, securities, real estate, and other assets you own at the time of death. Real estate owned in a different state than where you resided will be handled under the intestacy laws of the state where the property is located.

The laws of intestate succession vary greatly depending on whether you were single or married, or had children. In most cases, your property is distributed in split shares to your “heirs,” which could include your surviving spouse, siblings, aunts and uncles, nieces, nephews, and distant relatives. Generally, when no relatives can be found, the entire estate goes to the state.

No Will – Single With No Children

If you are single and childless, your parents will receive your entire estate if they are both living. Otherwise it will be divided among your siblings (including half-siblings) and your surviving parent, if one parent has already died.
If you have no surviving parents at the time of your death, then your entire estate will be divided among siblings, in equal parts.
If there are no surviving parents, siblings, or descendant’s of siblings (nieces and nephews), then the relatives on your mother’s side would inherit one-half of the estate, with the other one-half passing to the relatives on your father’s side.

Dying With No Will – Single With Children

If you are single and have children, then your entire estate generally will go to your children, in equal shares. If any child has died before you, and that child has any children, then his or her share will go to your grandchildren.

Married With No Children and No Will

Depending on how your assets are owned when you die, your estate will either go entirely to your surviving spouse (if community property), or split between your surviving spouse, siblings and parents (if separate property).

No Will and Married With Children

If you are married with children, your entire estate will go to your surviving spouse (if all children are the children of your surviving spouse). Otherwise, your surviving spouse will receive up to one-half of the estate, with the remaining portion passing to your surviving children from another spouse or partner.

Passing Away With No Will for Unmarried Couples

Dying without a will can be devastating to unmarried couples who are living together. Because intestacy laws only recognize relatives, unmarried couples do not inherit the property of the other partner when one partner dies without a will. Unless there is a will which clearly states a person’s intentions when they die, the decedent’s property will be divided among relatives, depending on their relation to the decedent.

Domestic Partners With No Will

Special rules apply to domestic partners. Since not all states recognize domestic partnerships, it is important to check the laws of your particular state to learn how property is distributed upon your death. Generally, if you die without a will and are survived by a domestic partner, your domestic partner inherits the same as a surviving spouse, depending on how you owned the property.

Free Consultation with a Utah Estate Lawyer

When you need legal help with a will, probate or estate, please call Ascent Law for your free estate law consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506
Ascent Law LLC
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About the Author

People who want a lot of Bull go to a Butcher. People who want results navigating a complex legal field go to a Lawyer that they can trust. That’s where I come in. I am Michael Anderson, an Attorney in the Salt Lake area focusing on the needs of the Average Joe wanting a better life for him and his family. I’m the Lawyer you can trust. I grew up in Utah and love it here. I am a Father to three, a Husband to one, and an Entrepreneur. I understand the feelings of joy each of those roles bring, and I understand the feeling of disappointment, fear, and regret when things go wrong. I attended the University of Utah where I received a B.A. degree in 2010 and a J.D. in 2014. I have focused my practice in Wills, Trusts, Real Estate, and Business Law. I love the thrill of helping clients secure their future, leaving a real legacy to their children. Unfortunately when problems arise with families. I also practice Family Law, with a focus on keeping relationships between the soon to be Ex’s civil for the benefit of their children and allowing both to walk away quickly with their heads held high. Before you worry too much about losing everything that you have worked for, before you permit yourself to be bullied by your soon to be ex, before you shed one more tear in silence, call me. I’m the Lawyer you can trust.